Wednesday, 6 April 2011

In vino veritas?

I've been accused of not being confessional enough by blogging standards, so here goes. Regular readers might have noted something that just occurred to me today - where are the short stories on my blog? The small 'p' philosophy? Has this something to do with lack of drink? If so, is this worrying?

Well, I'm still blogging away at the usual pace, but the posts are... too... prosaic? Too heavy on the light reportage? Where's the inspiration? Has the fact that Mr Dembinski has put away the bottles for six and half weeks anything to do with a slackening of literary output? Four weeks have gone by without me touching a drop of alcohol and during that time, 26 posts but only two 'life in balance' pieces and zero short stories.

I've had one brewing inside my head for a week or so, but I can't figure out how to end the damned thing. The basic premise, the atmosphere, details, descriptions, protagonists - all are drawn out - but... what happens in the end? Half an hour in the sauna... nothing. Long walk along Jeziorki's backroads... nothing.

The creative process is certainly enhanced by a glass of two of red wine imbibed of the evening. It makes the brain work just slightly differently; enough to be able to tweak a concept sufficiently to make it stand out or tease out an ending that my stone-cold-sober mind wouldn't necessarily be able to reach by taking the pedestrian route from A to B.

Dreams are a great source of ideas, but though they give rise to improbable conceits, improbable enough to be interesting, they often lack the logic needed to ensure that craved-for ending fits together. The state of mind between wakefulness and sleep is more useful. Looking at the seven short stories I've posted this year, only one was literally dreamt up in a state of sleep. The majority of the endings would come to me while waiting to drop off, or in the sauna (where again the brain works differently due to higher blood temperature).

I shall monitor myself when normal life resumes after Easter to see to what extent the create process (in my mind at least) is lubricated by the moderate consumption of alcohol. In the meanwhile, I will continue searching for a good way to end my next short story. And hope that literary polot ('verve', 'panache') does not necessarily come out of a bottle.

This time last year:
Are we getting more intelligent?

This time two years ago:
Lenten recipe No. 6

This time three years ago:
Coal trains, Konstancin-Jeziorna

This time four years ago:
Jeziorki from the air


jel said...

I smile. I removed an alcohol from my life many years ago. I simply don't like it.
I had a chance to read only one your story, Mr. Dembinski (about the cripple). It was very good, and the end was perfect. :-)

Paddy said...

Perhaps it's just a dip in your circadian rhythms? 6 months off booze would be long enough to tell I think.